The Emperor’s New Clothes


The Emperor’s New Clothes are Johannesburg based art activists creating awareness around the visual and written pollution infecting city dwellers. The daily news headlines and advertisements polluting our journeys speak of violence, oppression, sexuality, power, war, finance, health and death. The story told is of a stark reality that reflects the social and political systems that frame us.

By hanging extracts of poems in different languages on street poles, The Emperor’s New Clothes offers an antidote to news headlines. Like the small boy in Hans Christian Andersen’s tale, these poetic posters aim to move viewers out of a blind acceptance of what one reads and sees. They also suggest that ours is an experience drawn from the images and words around us and therefore never separate from them.

The Emperor’s New Clothes has committed to collect old, useless cable ties left on street poles to be transformed into artworks.

If you would like to participate in this ongoing project please send a message on their Facebook page: